Fishing Finicky Walleyes

April 24, 2010

Summer walleye, this is the time for the most popular game fish in Canada. Tens of thousands of anglers consider this their favourite fish to catch for the sport and mostly for the fact that it is one of the greatest fish to eat. This tip comes from an experience while fishing walleye in Northern Ontario, on Manitoulin Island, in went out early in the morning hoping to pick up a few walleye early. I headed for a shoal that I fish frequently; it is about 20 to 25 feet of water, and drops off to about 70 feet deep. After about and hour or so, I had 2 small walleyes to show for my effort.

Guessing that the cool front that moved through over night had affected the fish, I started to fish the drop off and along the length of the shoal, and still no fish. With the help of technology (fish finder, sonar) I found that there were groups of fish suspended at 20 to 25 feed in 75 feet of water. I finally surmised that the fish holding at this level would be very hard to get to, and when suspended like this they are usually not in a feeding mood.

The next problem was that to reach these fish with my jigs and no bottom structure to follow was near impossible, although down rigging or trolling would preset my bait at a better level, if they were not actively feeding it was again a tuff sell for these walleyes. What is needed in a situationlike this is a slow presentation of the lure or live bait.

I decided to give a slip-bobber a try; it's simple and deadly when used right. Most anglers don’t use this walleye technique enough it works. The slip bobber, slips up and down the line from your hook to a bobber stop you set for the desired depth. I needed to get the bait down 25 feet; with the slip bobber the stopper you use to set your depth is so small that it will pass through the rod guides and onto the reel without no problems at all. And if you find your depth is not quite right you simply move the stop up or down.

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